John Hyde Sweet, 1880-1964 [RG2503.AM]


RG2503.AM: John Hyde Sweet, 1880-1964

Papers: 1938-1940
Nebraska City, Otoe County, Neb.: Newspaper editor; U.S. Representative
Size: 11.0 cu.ft.; 22 boxes


John Hyde Sweet was born at Milford, Otsego Co., New York, September 1, 1880, the son of Charles Arthur and Minnie E. (Hyde) Sweet. His parents first came to Guide Rock, Nebraska and later moved to Palmyra. John was educated at the Palmyra High School and later attended the University of Nebraska. He moved with his family to Nebraska City in 1901.

Mr. Sweet was married to Zelma Harriet Ringsby October 5, 1904 at Auburn, Nebraska. He joined the Nebraska City News as its manager in 1909 and went on to become its editor, a position he held until his death in 1964. In 1938, he agreed to become congressional secretary to Congressman George H. Heinke. Heinke was killed in an auto accident in 1939 and Sweet was elected as First District Representative to finish Heinke’s term. Sweet had been a candidate for the Nebraska Legislature in 1926.

John Sweet was president of the Nebraska Press Association; president and charter member of the Nebraska City Chamber of Commerce, past president and organizer of the Nebraska City Rotary who awarded him the Community Service Award in 1929; past president BPOE, and he was a charter member of the Nebraska State Historical Society and the Nebraska Society. He received the Nebraska Builders Award from the University in 1951. He was a member of the original board of Nebraska City Utilities and served as a member of the State Normal Board.

John Hyde Sweet died at Wichenburg, Arizona following a stroke on April 4, 1964 and was buried at Wyuka Cemetery in Nebraska City on April 8, 1964. It is estimated that during his newspaper career, Sweet wrote approximately 2000 words a day, six days a week, 52 weeks a year, for nearly 55 years.


This collection consists of the papers of both the Hon. George H. Heinke and John Hyde Sweet which date from Mr. Heinke’s campaign of 1938 to the end of Mr. Sweet’s term of office in 1940. The collection is arranged in eight series: 1) General Correspondence by Subject, 1938-1940; 2) General Correspondence by Correspondent, 1940; 3) Correspondence Relating to the Second World War, 1939-1940; 4) Bulletin Requests, 1939-1940; 5) Form Letters, 1940; 6) Legislative Bills, 1939-1940; 7) Campaign and Election Data, 1938-1940; and 8) Printed Matter, 1938-1940.

Approximately four thousand pieces of correspondence form the bulk of the Sweet collection. The first two series consist of general correspondence filed alphabetically by topic and correspondent respectively. Series Three contains letters to and from constituents concerning adjournment of Congress, September-October 1940; Conscription, June-September, 1940; and neutrality, March-November 1939. Bulletin requests and form letters complete the correspondence files.

Series Six, Legislative Bills, consist of an extensive file of bills with some handwritten notes and comments. Campaign and election data includes such material as mailing lists, charts and maps. A file of printed matter completes the Sweet collection. This series includes the weekly press release “Capitol Hill,” by J.H. Sweet; literature from the Republican National Committee, speeches, bulletins and clippings.

Correspondents of Mr. Sweet and Mr. Heinke include: Charles D. Ammon, 1940; Paul Armstrong, 1940; Edward A. Beecher, 1939; Hugh A. Butler, 1939-1940; Earl Cline, 1940; Oren S. Copeland, 1940; Levi L. Coryell, Sr., 1940; Carl T. Curtis, 1940; Robert S. Dickinson, 1940; John M. Dierks, 1939; Isaac B. Flint, 1940; Harry D. Flory, 1939-1940; Rex Hazelrigg, 1939; Daniel M. Hildebrand, 1938-1939; Cordell Hull, 1939; Homer D. Kirk, 1939-1940; Walter D. Kirtley, 1940; Harry J. Krusz, 1940; James E. Lawrence, 1939-1940; Frederick H. Oberman, 1939; William H. Pitzer, 1940; Johm B. Quinn, 1939-1940; James L. Sellers, 1940; Arthur J. Weaver, 1940; Claude R. Wickard, 1940; William L. Wilson, 1940; and Millard T. Woods, 1939-1940.

This collection reflects the attitude of Nebraskans toward New Deal diplomacy, the arms embargo, the proposed 1939 revision of the neutrality act, and military conscription. Much of the correspondence relates to federal programs such as the National Youth Administration and Work Projects Administration, or to private organizations such as the Corn Belt Liberty League and the National Voice of Christian Economics. Of particular interest is a letter from Rex Hazelrigg, branch organizer of the Communist Party of the United States, Lincoln, Nebraska Branch, urging the lifting of the embargo on arms to Spain.


Series 1 – General Correspondence by Subject, 1938-1940

Box 1

  1. Agriculture – Special Committee
  2. Agriculture Adjustment Act
  3. Anti-Lynching Bill
  4. Applications
  5. Arbor Day
  6. Babies
  7. Census Applications
  8. China-Japan Protests
  9. Civil Aeronautics
  10. Civilian Conservation Corps Camps
  11. Communist party – Lincoln, Nebraska Branch
  12. Congressional Record – Requests, etc.
  13. Congressional Library

Box 2

  1. Corn Belt Liberty League
  2. Dies Committee – Anti-American
  3. District Newspaper Subscription Records
  4. Fox Farming
  5. Fed Surplus Commodity Corporation
  6. Federal Home Loan Bank Board
  7. Federal Theater Protests
  8. Flying Cadets
  9. Flood Control
  10. Grain Dealers – on musty wheat
  11. Hendricks, Bill
  12. Hog Processing Tax
  13. House Stationery Room Bills
  14. Immigration
  15. Interstate Commerce Commission

Box 3

  1. Kings Canyon National Park Bill
  2. Kirk, Homer D.
  3. Legislature of Nebraska
  4. Maps – Geologic Survey Catalog – Prices-Information
  5. Medicine, Socialized
  6. National Youth Administration
  7. National Youth Administration
  8. Neely Bill
  9. Newspapers
  10. Patman Bill – Chain Stores
  11. Photographs
  12. Public Works Administration
  13. Postmastership
  14. Quinn, John B.
  15. Reciprocal Trade
  16. Reclamation
  17. Rural Electrification
  18. Rural Mail Routes
  19. Salary Vouchers – GHH, JHS, HC
  20. Silver Purchase Act

Box 4

  1. Social Security Act
  2. Spanish Embargo
  3. Soil Surveys – 1st District Inquiries
  4. Stock Yards Act
  5. Stauss, George A.
  6. Townsend Clubs and Bills
  7. Veterans Pensions
  8. War letters
  9. Wheeler/Lea Bill
  10. Wheeler/Jones Bill
  11. Worker Alliance of America

Box 5

  1. Works Progress Administration
  2. Correspondence
  3. Petitions
  4. Protests
  5. Miscellany

Series 2 – General Correspondence by Correspondent, 1938-1940

Box 6 Correspondence A – D

Box 7 Correspondence E – K

Box 8 Correspondence L – R

Box 9 Correspondence S – Z

Series 3 – Correspondence relating to WWII

Box 10

  1. Adjournment of Congress, 1940
  2. Conscription, 1940

Box 11

  1. Neutrality, A-R, 1939

Box 12

  1. Neutrality, S-Z, 1939

Series 4 – Bulletin Requests

  1. Bulletin Requests, 1939

Box 13

  1. Bulletin Requests, 1939-1940

Series 5 – Form Letters

  1. American Policy
  2. American Legion Dept
  3. 9-State Committee
  4. Members of Bar
  5. Graduation
  6. Defense Jobs
  7. Adjournment
  8. William Jennings Bryan Memorial
  9. Export-Import Bank
  10. Time Table of Dictatorship
  11. War Hysteria Letter
  12. Mimeo – Yearbooks
  13. Committee Letter, 1940, June 6

Box 14

  1. Supreme Court, 150th Anniversary
  2. Defense Program Letter
  3. Neutrality
  4. Hughes Address, Special
  5. Lawrence #2
  6. Lawrence Letter
  7. Postcard, Notice of Document
  8. Accident Bulletins
  9. Release, Arbor Day
  10. Cherry Blossom Letter
  11. WPA
  12. Document Ordered
  13. Stencil, Document Ordered

Series 6 – Legislative Bills, 1939-1940

  1. Townsend Act
  2. J. Hamilton Lewis Funeral
  3. HR 9980
  4. 3rd Deficiency Payment of Draft
  5. Transportation Bill
  6. Military Training
  7. Naval Bills
  8. District of Columbia Reorganization
  9. Wool Label Bill
  10. Investigation & Rec. Committee

Box 15

  1. Indian Affairs
  2. Excess Profits
  3. Tennessee Federal Judge
  4. Defense Housing
  5. 2nd Omnibus Claims Bill
  6. Increase Naval Academy
  7. Export & Import Bank
  8. National Farm Policy
  9. Indians
  10. $150,000,000
  11. Soldiers & Sailors Relief Act
  12. Stolen Property Act
  13. Indian Act
  14. Mt. Vernon Highway
  15. Water Conservation
  16. 3rd Deficiency
  17. Assign Claims on Public Contracts
  18. Refugee Children
  19. Defense of the US Tax Act
  20. Vessels & Neutrality Act
  21. Sugar Bill
  22. Monroe Doctrine

Box 16

  1. Farm Acts
  2. National Defense Appropriations
  3. Legislative Branch, Appropriation
  4. R.F.C. Amend
  5. Boulder Dam
  6. National Defense
  7. Navy Expansion
  8. Mexican Claims
  9. Naval Shipbuilding
  10. Naval Air Craft
  11. War Department Appropriations
  12. Immigration & Naturalization
  13. 2nd Supplemental, Defense Appropriation
  14. Alien Registration
  15. Federal Reserve Act

Box 17

  1. War Claims
  2. Wages & Hours
  3. T.V.A.
  4. Dept of Agriculture
  5. Commodity Cadet Conference
  6. 2nd Deficiency Bill
  7. Agriculture Appropriation
  8. Administrative Rules
  9. Labor Appropriations
  10. Promotion List, Army Officers
  11. Agriculture
  12. Reorganization Plan # IV
  13. Labor Bill
  14. Hatch Resolution
  15. Smith Resolution to Invest NLRB
  16. New York World’s Fair
  17. Transportation
  18. Lend-Spend
  19. Housing

Box 18

  1. Third Deficiency
  2. Crop Insurance
  3. District of Columbia Revenue
  4. Bloom Neutrality
  5. WPA Appropriations
  6. Mexican Claims, Expenses
  7. District of Columbia Appropriations
  8. Stabilization Extension
  9. River & Harbor
  10. Department of State, Justice, Commerce
  11. Social Security
  12. District of Columbia
  13. TVA
  14. Hyde Park Library
  15. Tax Revision
  16. “Hot Oil”

Box 19

  1. Supplemental Military Bill
  2. Ind. Offices Bill
  3. Legislative Appropriations Bill
  4. Agricultural Appropriations Bill
  5. Labor Appropriations
  6. National Defense
  7. 1st Deficiency Bill
  8. H. Res. 26, Dies
  9. Tax on Compensation of Public Officers
  10. P.O. Retirement Bills
  11. Election Com Bills
  12. Additional Work Relief
  13. Second Deficiency

Box 20

  1. Dept of Interior
  2. RFC, Com. Cr. Cor, Export-Import
  3. Naval Building Bill, Guam
  4. Treasury & P.O. Appropriation Bills
  5. Military Establishment

Series 7 – Campaign and Election Data, 1930-1940

  1. Election, Data Votes, Maps
  2. 1940 Graduates
  3. Reorganization
  4. County Teachers Mailing List
  5. Box Holders, Rural Only
  6. Grain Dealers, First District
  7. Lawyers, First District

Series 8 – Printed Matter, 1939-1940

Box 21

  1. “Capitol Hill,” by J.H. Sweet, a weekly press release, 1939-1940
  2. Republican National Committee Literature, 1938-1939
  3. Veterans Administration
  4. Speeches, 1939-1940

Box 22

  1. Booklet prepared for Congressmen concerning Railway bills
  2. Newspaper clippings
  3. Conscription Bill, newspaper clippings
  4. Railroads, Transportation

Subject headings:

Butler, Hugh Alfred, 1878-1954
Communist Party (Lincoln, Neb.)
Corn Belt Liberty League
Curtis, Carl Thomas, 1905-2000
Flint, Isaac Braxton,
Hazelrigg, Rex
Heinke, George Henry, 1882-1940
Hull, Cordell, 1871-1955
National Voice of Christian Economics (Wahoo, Neb.)
National Youth Administration
Nebraska Consolidated Mills Company (Omaha, Neb.)
Military service, compulsory
Sweet, John Hyde, 1880-1964
United States. Congress. House of Representatives
United States. Works Projects Administration
Weaver, Arthur Jerard, 1873-1945
Wickard, Claude Raymond, 1893-1967

Revised 10-26-2009 TMM

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